QUETTA - The Election Commission of Pakistan Friday de-seated Pashtunkhwa Milli Awami Party’s defiant lawmaker Manzoor Ahmed Khan Kakar on the application of its chairman Mehmood Khan Achakzai.

The ECP decision came a day before the Senate polls which are scheduled to be held across the country on March 3 (today). Manzoor Kakar was one of the 41 legislators who had moved no-confidence motion against Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri. Zehri was forced to quit before the no-trust vote.

Manzoor Ahmed Kakar was holding the portfolio of revenue in the cabinet of Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo. The election commission de-notified Kakar for betraying his party.

“The Election Commission of Pakistan hereby de-notifies Manzoor Ahmed Khan Kakar as a winning candidate from Constituency PB-6, Quetta, consequent upon his disqualification on the ground of defection under Article 63-A of the constitution,” reads the notification published on the ECP website.

The decision proved to be a setback for the rebellious minister as well as the coalition government of Mir Abdul Quddus Bisenjo for a tough contest is expected Saturday (today) amongst 25 aspirants of political, nationalist, religious and independent contesters for the 11 seats of various categories in Balochistan. There are seven general category, two technocrat and two women seats.

Amongst 25, 15 contenders would flex their muscles for general category seats, six for technocrat seats and four for women seats. The provincial election commission has finalised arrangements for the Senate polls. As per the rules, election for the Balochsitan senators would be held in the provincial assembly.

According to the provincial election commission, polling for the Senate seats will begin at 9am in the Balochistan Assembly and continue without any break till 4pm. There would be no media coverage for the Senate polls while the lawmakers have been strictly directed to bring the assembly secretariat cards on the polling day. In order to ensure privacy of ballot papers and vote, there would be a ban on the use of mobile phones for the lawmakers at the polling station.

Stringent security measures have been taken for the elections, the DIG told Balochistan Assembly Speaker Raheela Hamid Khan Durrani. Provincial Election Commissioner Naeem Majeed Jaffar also inspected the assembly hall to review the security arrangements.

It is worth mentioning that 11 senators are going to retire from Balochistan and the same number of the upper house members would replace them.